The Bad &
by S. Jansen
December 1, 2018
At an recent annual pajama party of college friends with over twenty women there, we sat around drinking champagne and swapping “romance” stories. I was amazed at the similarities in our lives and how much we had in common in our search for love.
We laughed at the comedy of our romantic wiles, and how our brains seemed to leave us when the notion of love slyly beckoned for us to follow it blindly. We also sighed heavily at the tragedies we knew about and the ones we’d experienced ourselves. As I listened to the stories around me, I decided to share them with a larger audience. The stories, which were all labeled true, fell into three categories: romantic, sad and ridiculous. Thus, I begin with my own story, which falls easily under the third category.
Me: In college, I fell under the spell of the most popular guy on campus. He had big brown eyes that pierced my soul every time he looked at me. My dorm room was filled with wedding books full of glorious gowns, as I anticipated being chosen as his wife. But on his graduation night, he informed me after I caught him in the arms of another, that he had secretly gotten married the week before, and was leaving on his honeymoon the next day. I was devastated and convinced my world had come to an end. However, when he phoned me on his honeymoon, and stated he still loved me too, I rationalized that he had just made a mistake, and was confused about his feelings. The honeymoon call was the trick that kept me bound to him for another two years, as I consented to meet him in all of the out of the way places he could think of. I finally gained some sanity, when his wife got pregnant with twins.
- From the beginning of their courtship, Ellen’s boyfriend always sent her roses once a week. When they married, the tradition continued, and when he died ten years later of prostate cancer, he commissioned his brother in his will to continue the tradition.
- When Tonya’s boyfriend proposed to her, he came to the hospital where she worked and arranged to do so over the paging system
- Tracy’s boyfriend, who was a prominent attorney chartered a private jet and flew them from Los Angeles to beautiful Sausalito for dinner. On the way back, he presented her with a beautiful diamond friendship ring, which she still wears, though the relationship ended shortly after that fabulous trip.
- After he cancelled another date with her, Toni gave into her suspicions one night and followed her boyfriend’s car from a club. When he pulled in front of a strange house and went inside, she parked and waited for him to come out. She suspected he was visiting another woman, and she planned to confront him when he came out. Unfortunately, he was in there so long that she fell asleep and when she woke up, he was tapping on her window holding the hand of another woman and waving goodbye.
- Angie had keys to her boyfriend’s car. So, when she spotted it one night accidentally on an unfamiliar street, she became suspicious. She assumed that he was up to mischief because she hadn’t been able to reach him all day. She decided to fix him by moving his car four blocks away. However, she was totally embarrassed when she later learned that he was at the home of his uncle who was very ill. It turned out he reported his car stolen, when he stepped outside to take his uncle to the hospital, and the car was gone. It doomed the relationship when she confessed what she had done.
- Suzanne went to a party with a first date, who told her after several hours of intermittent disappearing that he had to leave to take a sick friend home and he would be back. She sat there waiting for him long after the party ended, but he never came back, and she finally called a cab and went home. The next day, he called and explained that he’d gotten stuck at the hospital and his phone was dead. She made another date to see him again, but he never showed up or called.
- Merle’s husband moved out after two weeks of marriage, leaving a note on the refrigerator claiming he had made a mistake because he still loved an ex-girlfriend.
- Cathy stood in the lobby of City Hall all day waiting for her boyfriend so they could be married, but he never showed up. That night, she received a text from him stating he changed his mind, and that he was sorry. She attempted suicide the next day, but survived when her neighbor found her.
- At Dina’s wedding, the “ex-wife” of the groom interrupted the wedding vows by shouting from the audience that she was three months pregnant, and that he was the father. Dina ran from the church crying and got hit by a car when she ran into the street. Both of her legs were broken, and the wedding never took place.
The names are fictitious, but the stories are real.